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Interpretation 101: making your collections meaningful
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Interpretation 101: making your collections meaningful

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Slides from a workshop presented at the Museums Australia National Conference in Adelaide, September 2012, on behalf of Interpretation Australia

Slides from a workshop presented at the Museums Australia National Conference in Adelaide, September 2012, on behalf of Interpretation Australia


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  • 1. Regan Forrest and Katherine SutcliffeInterpretation Australia
  • 2. Today’s Workshop • Shock and ORE• Themes• Practicing storytelling for your site
  • 3. Shock!  Don’t think!List five objects from your collection
  • 4. ORE • Organised• Relevant• Engaging
  • 5. When good museums go bad 
  • 6. Relevant? 
  • 7. Organised 
  • 8. Organised? 
  • 9.
  • 10. TORE, T=Theme • Sam Ham• Building blocks to good storytelling and effective engagement
  • 11. Themes If you only remember one thing about Tilden,know this: Information is not Interpretation
  • 12. Themes are: • Full ideas• Complete sentences• The ‘main message’ or ‘take home message’• The point of the exhibit/presentation
  • 13. Themes • help you work out what to say• help you work out what not to say
  • 14. Public access rights to Britain’s open spaces wereeventually won following long-standing disputesbetween landowners and ramblers which came to ahead with the landmark mass trespass protest onKinder Scout in 1932
  • 15. Our right to roam was once a fight to roam – and themost famous battle took place right here on KinderScoutSource: TellTale Interpretation, UK
  • 16. Why say it when you can show it? 
  • 17. Objects and words together 
  • 18. Now, you try 
  • 19. Interpretive Planning: Finding your way  A map  where you are now (current experiences, strengths and weaknesses) An inventory  what you have (people, places, collections) A destination  where you want to be (intended audience, visitor experience) A compass  how you’re going to get there (media selection, implementation plan) Signposts  evaluation, maintenance and ongoing review Extra resources through http://interpretationaustralia.asn.au/resources/sample-documents

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